Research Services

Erie County Public Library Databases, Electronic Resources, and Recommended Sites

A valid library card is required for PowerLibrary and Erie County Public Library (ECPL) resources.
Web resources available on the Internet are free sites recommended by librarians.

Auto Information & Repair

Auto Repair Reference Center provides detailed and diagrammed automotive repair and maintenance information covering most major manufacturers. Power Library resource ~ Library card required.

Kelley Blue Book's website contains new and used vehicle pricing and information. Mobile homes, RVs, motorcycles, snowmobiles, and personal watercrafts are also included.

Biography & Genealogy

Erie County Public Library Obituary Listings is the online index to the Library’s microfilm collection, which covers from 1822 to the present. A print version of the Index, along with the microfilm of the Erie newspapers is available for viewing in the Heritage Room on the second floor of the Blasco Library. Obituaries can also be obtained by mail.

American Ancestors – Available for In-Library Use only in the Blasco Library’s Heritage Room

Ancestry.com – Available for In-Library use only in the Blasco Library’s Heritage Room

Contemporary Authors offers biographical coverage of more than 100,000 writers and entries on contemporary authors. Power Library resource ~Library Card required.

Heritage Quest provides comprehensive information for conducting genealogical and local history research. ECPL Resource ~ Library Card required.

Cyndi's List is a genealogy website that indexes thousands of Internet resources. Categories such as official records, research and reference tools, ethnic groups, religions and more are organized for ease in searching.

Family Search The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints provides genealogy information free of charge.
The research guidance service on the site is an interactive wizard that offers detailed help. Blasco Library is a delivery location for FamilySearch.

Books & Reading

BookFlix is an online literacy resource for grades pre-K-3 that pairs classic video storybooks with related nonfiction eBooks to build a love of reading and learning. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

EBSCO eBooks formerly known as NetLibrary, this e-resource provides access to books from the world's leading publishers across all major subject areas. Perform full-text searches of a single eBook, search thousands of volumes simultaneously, browse topic categories, or read eBooks directly online. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Find a Book is the shared AccessPA database for books, movies, audio, reference materials owned by over 2,600 libraries across Pennsylvania and their combined collections of over 43 million books, audio materials, reference materials, movies, and much more.

hoopla Library card holders can visit hoopladigital.com or download the free hoopla digital mobile app on their Android or IOS device to begin enjoying thousands of titles. E-books, comic books, and audiobooks, as well as movies, tv shows and full music albums, are available to borrow 24/7 for instant streaming or temporary downloading to smartphones, tablets and computers. All titles available are available and hoopla digital’s automatic return feature eliminates late fees. 7 tiltles per month are available to borrow. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

OverDrive Digital Media find ebooks, eaudio and evideo formats for adult, teen, and children’s fiction, nonfiction, popular authors, and more to download to your computer or compatible device. Compatible with most eReaders and other devices, including Kindle. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Business & Finance

Business Source Main Addition is a scholarly business e-resource that provides the complete text for over 2,200 magazines and journals, as well as indexes and abstracts for over 2,300 titles. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Morningstar Investment Research Center is designed for individual investors, the e-resource includes research on more than 41,000 stocks, mutual funds, and exchange-traded funds. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Pennsylvania Workforce Statistics access fast-facts, Labor & Industry research and reports, current employment statistics statewide by county - with monthly updates, and the latest news about the Pennsylvania workforce.

ReferenceUSA is a telephone and information database containing information on 24 million US businesses, 1.5 million Canadian business, 89 million US residences, access to 2.5 million job postings and internships, and more. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Children's Resources

BBC Animals find out about a variety of animals, where and how they live, and the latest news about them.

BookFlix is an online literacy resource for grades pre-K-3 that pairs classic video storybooks with related nonfiction eBooks to build a love of reading and learning. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

CyberSmarts is an interactive ebook collection offers users a safe, simulated Internet experience with hands-on instruction on how to deal with important online safety issues. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Elementary Student Search powered by EBSCO Explora, use this fun easy to use resource to discover reliable information on thousands of topics covering a wide range of subjects including art and music, history, science, technology, engineering, mathematics, health, and sports. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Kid’s Search is designed for grades K-8, where students can search a wide range of subjects in a professionally selected collection of age-appropriate magazine & newspaper articles. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Middle Search: Main Editiondesigned for middle school students, this e-resource provides full text access to popular magazines, thousands of biographies and historical essays, and an image collection with over 960,000 photos, maps, and flags. All full-text articles are assigned a reading level indicator (Lexiles). Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Middle School Student Search powered by EBSCO Explora, use this fun easy to use resource to discover reliable information on thousands of topics covering a wide range of subjects including art and music, history, science, technology, engineering, mathematics, health, and sports. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Primary Search Main Edition contains the full-text for more than 80 of the most popular elementary school magazines designed for Elementary school students. All full-text articles are assigned a reading level indicator (Lexiles). Also, features Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia, providing students with easy-to-read encyclopedic entries written specifically for kids. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Searchasaurus is a search interface designed for primary school students that provides information on a wide range of topics from over 80 popular full-text magazines, American Heritage Children's Dictionary, and the Encyclopedia of Animals. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

SIRS Discover provides carefully selected full text articles and images from over 1600 domestic and international newspapers, magazines, and government documents for elementary and middle school students, researchers, and educators. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Consumer Resources

Better Business Bureau’s website contains information about businesses and charitable organizations throughout the country to help consumers make informed decisions.

Consumer Reports presents articles on cars, health, home appliances & electronics, as well as information about public safety, marketplace economics and the judicial & regulatory actions that affect consumers from 1985-Present. Also available to Crawford County residents. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Current Topics & Controversies

Issues & Controversies (from Infobase Learning) provides exclusive, extensive coverage of hundreds of today's hot topics, with unbiased analysis and rich related resources. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Education

LISTA (Library, Information, Science & Technology Abstracts) Includes more than 600 periodicals, plus books, research reports and proceedings. Subject coverage includes librarianship, classification, cataloging, bibliometrics, online information retrieval, information management and more. Coverage in the database extends back as far as the mid-1960s. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

Teacher Reference Center provides abstract information from over 260 of the most popular teacher and administrator trade journals. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

Peterson’s website contains school information from kindergarten through graduate programs. Also included are career information, resume help, and strategies for planning for and financing an education.

General Reference

AskHerePA Chat online now with a real librarian, one-to -one, in real-time -- for help with any topic or information need.

EBSCO provides a single location from which to simultaneously search most of the Access PA EBSCO e-resources. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

POWER Library provides access to thousands of full text periodical articles, newspapers, a major encyclopedia, plus photographs, pictures, charts, maps, and reference materials for people of all ages. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

MasterFile Main Edition provides full text for over 1,700 reference resources, magazines, and journals covering general interest subject areas, designed specifically for public libraries. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

ReferenceUSA is a telephone and information database containing information on 24 million US businesses, 1.5 million Canadian business, 89 million US residences, access to 2.5 million job postings and internships, and more. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

SIRS provides carefully selected full text articles and images from over 1,600 domestic and international newspapers, magazines, and government documents. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

Government & Law

Erie County’s official website links to services and information for county residents. Property assessments, links to county services and agencies, forms, court records and more.

First.gov is the official portal of the U.S. federal government. First.gov puts users in touch with elected officials and government agencies.

IRS website provides Federal tax information and planning help for individuals, business, tax professionals, charitable and non-profit organizations and government entities.

State of Pennsylvania’s official website connects Pennsylvania residents with services such as driver’s licensing and vehicle registration, state tax forms and instructions, tourism information and links to state agencies and officials.

U.S. Census Bureau provides complete census information for the U.S. Much of the information from the website can be downloaded at no charge, special census products can be purchased.

Health & Medicine

Consumer Health Complete provides convenient access to easily understandable health and medical information. Consumers can search and browse within medical encyclopedias, popular reference books, and magazine articles. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

Healthfinder.gov is a U.S. government site with links to health and medical news, databases, journals and other information from government, non-profit and academic sources.

MedlinePlus, maintained by the National Institutes of Health, is for those interested in reliable information on prescription and over-the-counter drugs. Many other health-related resources are also listed.

Images

AP Images offers
more than 500,000 current and historical photographs and graphics can be searched by date, place and subject. More than 800 photographs are added to the archive daily. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

Library of Congress: Prints and Photographs website includes over 14 million digitized images from the Library of Congress image collection.

Job & Career Resources

Learning Express Library allows you to take practice tests for a wide variety of jobs, including nursing, military, cosmetology, EMT and many other careers, as well as high school and college prep. e-Books and test prep guides are available in English and Spanish. ECPL resource ~ Library card required.

ReferenceUSA and indeed.com combine their resources to help you find your next job. Includes state-of-the art mapping tools and detailed business profiles. ECPL resources ~ Library card required.

Glassdoor provides library patrons with free unlimited access to job search, company reviews, salary and interview data. With over 340,000 listed companies and 15 million job postings, patrons can prepare for their next career move.

JobGateway is for Job-Seekers and Employers, with over 200,000 job openings, JobGateway® is part of the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry’s initiative to transform the landscape of how job-seekers find family sustaining jobs and how employers find the skilled candidates that they need.

Occupational Outlook Handbook is the Bureau of Labor Statistics guide to career information about hundreds of occupations including information on what workers do, the work environment, education, training, pay, the job outlook, similar occupations, and other qualifications.

Language Learning

Mango Languages is a fun and easy way to learn one of over 35 foreign languages, including French, Italian, Spanish and even Pirate. Mango also has 15 courses for non-English speaking people to learn English. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Magazines & Newspapers

EBSCO provides a single location from which to simultaneously search most of the PowerLibrary EBSCO e-resources. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Kid’s Search is designed for grades K-8, where students can search a wide range of subjects in a professionally selected collection of age-appropriate magazine & newspaper articles. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

MasterFile Main Edition is designed specifically for public libraries, providing full text for over 1,300 reference resources, magazines, and journals covering general interest subject areas. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Newspaper Source Plus provides more than 1,000 full-text newspapers, providing more than 39 million full-text articles. This database contains comprehensive full text for major newspapers and more than 1,111,000 TV & radio news transcripts. Updated daily. Power Library resource ~ Library Card required.

Music & Film

hoopla Library card holders can visit hoopladigital.com or download the free hoopla digital mobile app on their Android or IOS device to begin enjoying thousands of titles. Movies, TV, e-books, comic books, audiobooks and full music albums are available to borrow 24/7 for instant streaming or temporary downloading to smartphones, tablets and computers. All titles available are available and hoopla digital’s automatic return feature eliminates late fees. 7 tiltles per month are available to borrow. ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

Allmusic allows you to search a large database of music information that includes biographies, discographies, genre charts, and reviews.

IMBD (Internet Movie Database) is a comprehensive, fact-filled site about movies and television shows.

Nonprofit & Grant Opportunites

The Foundation Center is available for In-Library use only at the Blasco Memorial Library. The Erie County Public Library is a Cooperating Collection of the Foundation Center. As a member of this nationwide network of libraries, community foundations, and other nonprofit agencies, the Erie County Public Library provides visitors with free public access to grant maker directories, books on fundraising and nonprofit management and the Foundation Center’s online directory. Please contact the Reference Department for more information or please call the library directly.

Foundation Directory Online provides access to an wealth of timely, comprehensive information on grantmakers and their grants. Included is a database of over 140,000 foundations, corporate giving programs, and grantmaking public charities in the U.S.; a database of over 4,000 sponsoring companies, offering a quick pathway to corporate funders; a database of over 3.8 million recently awarded grants; and a keyword-searchable database of over 1 million recently filed IRS Forms 990 and 990-PF. Available for In-Library Use Only.

Foundation Maps is the Foundation Center’s premier data visualization tool and the easiest way to see who is funding what and where around the world. With millions of grants from 2006 to the present, innovative ways to visualize funding data, and the flexibility and precision to tailor research, Foundation Maps helps funders and nonprofits access the knowledge they need to make strategic decisions and strengthen their impact. Available for In-Library Use Only.

Foundation Grants to Individuals Online is one of the most comprehensive databases of foundations that provide a wide range of funding support for individuals looking for scholarships, student loans and fellowships. Updated weekly. Available for In-Library Use Only.

Science & Technology

Today’s Science bridges the gap between the science that students learn in the classroom and the discoveries pushing the boundaries of science today.ECPL resource ~ Library Card required.

How Stuff Works provides easy to read explanations of how things work. The site lets you upload photos and videos to help supplement the written content.

NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's website provides information of current and past NASA space missions, photo galleries, information about Earth and the Solar System, as well as offers a variety of resources for students and educators.

Social Studies & History

CIA World Fact Book’s website published by the Central Intelligence Agency of the U.S., contains statistics for countries around the world, including images of flags and reference maps in a variety of formats.

GreenFile is a collection of scholarly, government and general-interest titles includes content on global warming, green building, pollution, sustainable agriculture, renewable energy, recycling, and more. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

SIRS Discoverer provides carefully selected full text articles and images from over 1,600 domestic and international newspapers, magazines, and government documents. Power Library resource. Library Card required.

Test Preparation

LearningExpress Library features nearly 1,000 online tutorials, practice tests, and eBooks to help patrons of all ages. It offers job search and workplace skills improvement, skill building in reading, writing, math, and basic science, career certification and licensure exam prep, college and grad school entrance test prep, GED® test prep, and more. Also available to Crawford County residents. ECPL resource ~ Library card required.